Craft, boutique, small-batch, independent – it doesn’t matter what you call them, Adelaide’s microbrewers and distillers are growing strong.
Prancing Pony Brewery
This crowd-pleasing Adelaide Hills establishment offers at least 12 house beers on tap, a range of local SA wines plus a satisfying food menu of small snacks, burgers, and platters.
42 Mt Barker Road, Totness; (08) 8398 3881
Big Shed Brewing Concern
Craig Basford and Jason Harris started as home-brewers more than 15 years ago but it wasn’t until 2013 they released a commercial offering. Now, there are six core beers plus seasonal specials. Sample them at Big Shed’s lively, unpretentious tasting bar, which also boasts a two-speed menu of Burgers and Not Burgers.
13/2 Brandwood Street, Royal Park; (08) 8240 5037
These reclaimed cold stores do double time as the distillery of Applewood and cellar door of Unico Zelo wines. Owners and winemakers Brendan and Laura Carter have become distilling experts, knocking up batches for the likes of Prohibition Liquor, Ounce Gin and Brocken Spectre. A tasting here – spirits or wines – includes a distillery tour.
24 Victoria Street, Gumeracha; (08) 8389 1250
An eclectic rustic feel dominates at this McLaren Vale establishment, named after owner/brewers Simon Dunstone and Kate Henning’s dogs. Four staple brews are on tap, plus a range of local wines. There’s a tight selection of pizzas, a playground for the littlies and to complete the convivial vibe, live music every Sunday afternoon.
Hansen Street, Myponga; (08) 8558 6166
Sweet Amber Brewing Co.
Beginning with a small café/bar hybrid in Semaphore, owner Dane Adkins has now launched his own microbrewery – up the road from Coopers, mind you. Of the brewery’s eight taps, four are dedicated to ‘core’ beers such as an IPA, a blonde ale, and a coffee stout. ‘Roadies’ are encouraged, poured to order and come in one or two litre offerings.
Unit 5, 21-23 Naweena Road, Regency Park; (08) 8341 7453
Lady Burra Brewhouse
Giant murals adorn the walls at this urban brew house in the CBD. There are six house beers (four year-round; two seasonal) plus an extensive drinks list and knowledgeable staff to point you in the right direction. Peckish? The tasty Portuguese-influenced tapas menu will sort you out. The new expanded deck has also finally been completed.
4 Topham Mall, Adelaide; 08 8231 8928
The Wheatsheaf Hotel
Co-publican and head brewer Jade Flavell calls it “guerrilla brewing”; since 2014, she’s crafted 180 batches of over 70 different beers under The Wheatsheaf’s Wheaty Brewing Corps label. It’s worked: they were recently named Champion Small Brewery in the 2017 Craft Beer Awards. The old-school pub (also a great live music venue) boasts 13 taps inside, plus six in the shipping-container bar located in the beer garden (open weekends); more than half feature rotating house beers of varying styles: hoppy pales, sours, lagers, IPAs and more.
39 George Street, Thebarton; (08) 8443 4564
Little Bang Brewing Co.
At Little Bang Brewing Co, you can sample up to eight of the 25-odd beers that owners Ryan Davidson and Filip Kemp concoct. Even though the small-batch brews turn over often, Davidson says, “we make sure we've got a good, approachable range at any given time.” Kick back in the beer garden, tuck into food-truck fare on weekends and order their refreshing Sturt Street Saison.
8A Union Street, Stepney; 0417 085 692
Image: Iain Dalrymple
The Pirate Life cellar door, arguably Adelaide’s fast-growing and most recognisable craft brewer, offers daily tours of their operation (2pm, $15; book in advance) plus plenty of sampling opportunities – from tasting flights and the rotating taps, to nine core beers in the fridge, including their award-winning Mosaic IPA.
89 South Road, Hindmarsh; (08) 8340 1447
Top image: Little Bang Brewing Co./Iain Dalrymple
SEE ALSO: Where to Devour Adelaide’s Best Burgers